1. Joined
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    01 Feb '08 00:28
    if god is omnipresent, could one not make a literal interpretation of the bible and say that god is just the universe? it would also explain how he is "eternal" since for all we know, the universe may very well be eternal (or the w/e it was before the big bang; if there was anything).
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    01 Feb '08 00:32
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    if god is omnipresent, could one not make a literal interpretation of the bible and say that god is just the universe? it would also explain how he is "eternal" since for all we know, the universe may very well be eternal (or the w/e it was before the big bang; if there was anything).
    God=Universe is called pantheism. In Christain theology, God is ominpresent, but he is MORE than just the universe. He is also "outside" of the universe. He also has a personality, which the physical universe does not.
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    01 Feb '08 01:25
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    if god is omnipresent, could one not make a literal interpretation of the bible and say that god is just the universe? it would also explain how he is "eternal" since for all we know, the universe may very well be eternal (or the w/e it was before the big bang; if there was anything).
    Maybe it depends on how you define god. I think you could define 'god' in a purely natural, non aware sense, and yes, then you might be able to say the universe is god, or the energy in it. I think Christian mythology is inaccurate.
  4. Joined
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    01 Feb '08 03:12
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    if god is omnipresent, could one not make a literal interpretation of the bible and say that god is just the universe? it would also explain how he is "eternal" since for all we know, the universe may very well be eternal (or the w/e it was before the big bang; if there was anything).
    There are several problems with the premises behind your question.

    1. The question of "could one...make a literal interpretation of the bible" is quite different from: *should* one make a literal interpretation. To answer this question directly, yes, of course one *could*. One could do anything. The more interesting question of whether one ought to, however, gains nothing from your leading conditional "if god is omnipresent".

    In other words, whether or not one accepts god as omnipresent has nothing to do with whether one should (or could, for that matter) make a literal interpretation of the bible. They're independent issues.

    2. Let's excise the bible issue completely and get at the heart of your question: if god is omnipresent, is it reasonable to say that god is the universe?

    No...not unless you're using a radically different definition of "god" than what is generally accepted. There's nothing wrong with using your own personal definition--there is something wrong with discussing it unless you make that defn explicit, however. (If you don't, then we risk degenerating into an discussion over pure semantics; what to call things versus what things are.)

    If, in whatever defn of god you choose to accept, you also accept that god created the universe and everything in it, then it becomes quite clear to me that "god" can not both have created the universe and be the thing that was created. You might think that physicists make exactly this claim when they put forth the Big Bang theory--after all, is that not an example of the universe creating itself?

    Not really--if you get into the details of it, physicists generally use the term "universe" to refer to the realm in which science (specifically physics) applies. Whatever things were before the Big Bang, no one makes the claim that physics applies to what came before. (In fact, a large branch of physics right now is concerned with showing exactly how long after the event that the laws of physics as we know them kicked in.)

    What this basically boils down to is--nearly all sensible defns of god are informed by at least one metaphysical element. By definition, "metaphysical" means "not of the universe" (using "universe" in the physics sense). So god is pretty much always accepted as "the universe plus something else" where the something else changes depending on who you're talking to.

    Most often, the person you're talking to literally doesn't have any notion at all of what that something else is, which, in my humble opinion, means that to that person "god" is an undefined term.
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    01 Feb '08 03:53
    Originally posted by severoon
    There are several problems with the premises behind your question.

    1. The question of "could one...make a literal interpretation of the bible" is quite different from: *should* one make a literal interpretation. To answer this question directly, yes, of course one *could*. One could do anything. The more interesting question of whether one ought to, howe ...[text shortened]... umble opinion, means that to that person "god" is an undefined term.
    i should have said, "is it possible that the writers of the bible were referring to the universe as god?"
  6. Cape Town
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    01 Feb '08 10:36
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    i should have said, "is it possible that the writers of the bible were referring to the universe as god?"
    No.
  7. The Fearful Sphere
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    01 Feb '08 10:41
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    No.
    Well said.
  8. England
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    01 Feb '08 11:21
    moses saw the back of his head when the law was written on the mountain, so he saw the universe as we do at night and knew the diference.
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    01 Feb '08 13:182 edits
    ================================

    If, in whatever defn of god you choose to accept, you also accept that god created the universe and everything in it, then it becomes quite clear to me that "god" can not both have created the universe and be the thing that was created.

    ===================================


    However, the Christian teaching of Incarnation believes precisely that. Christ is the Creator as well as the creature.

    " ... and the Word was God ... All things came into being through Him [the Word], and apart from Him not one thing came into being which has come into being. ... And the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us." (See John 1:1-3,14)


    The Word became flesh. Or we could say that God clothed Himself in His own creation and became a man. Man is without doubt an item of the things created by God - "And God created man in His own image ..." (Gen. 1:27)


    The Christian doctrine of the incarnation of Christ holds that the Creator of all things was joined to His creation so that Christ is both the Creator and the creation in one Person.
  10. Felicific Forest
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    01 Feb '08 15:00
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    if god is omnipresent, could one not make a literal interpretation of the bible and say that god is just the universe? it would also explain how he is "eternal" since for all we know, the universe may very well be eternal (or the w/e it was before the big bang; if there was anything).
    What you describe is a form of Pantheism. In Christian teaching the Creator and His creation are seperate entities.
  11. Felicific Forest
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    01 Feb '08 15:04
    Originally posted by Jake Ellison
    Maybe it depends on how you define god. I think you could define 'god' in a purely natural, non aware sense, and yes, then you might be able to say the universe is god, or the energy in it. I think Christian mythology is inaccurate.
    There is no Christian mythology.
  12. Felicific Forest
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    01 Feb '08 15:06
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    i should have said, "is it possible that the writers of the bible were referring to the universe as god?"
    No. If you read the Bible you'll see that this isn't so.
  13. Joined
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    02 Feb '08 00:39
    Originally posted by jaywill
    [b]================================

    If, in whatever defn of god you choose to accept, you also accept that god created the universe and everything in it, then it becomes quite clear to me that "god" can not both have created the universe and be the thing that was created.

    ===================================


    However, the Christian teaching ...[text shortened]... joined to His creation so that Christ is both the Creator and the creation in one Person.[/b]
    Yes, agreed. Christian theology--which requires a leap of faith in rational beings if it is to be believed--does indeed teach this.

    Whether it is taught and whether one may believe such teachings, however, are separate issues from each other and from the point I made in my post.
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    02 Feb '08 00:40
    Originally posted by ivanhoe
    There is no Christian mythology.
    I beg to differ: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_mythology
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    02 Feb '08 00:42
    Originally posted by EcstremeVenom
    i should have said, "is it possible that the writers of the bible were referring to the universe as god?"
    Which writers are you referring to?

    Are you talking about the original authors, the translators, or the many, many scribes that changed passages wholesale due to their own interpretations or to make one section more consistent with another?

    I don't pose this question frivolously--you're assuming that the bible in its present form is the result of some coherent process of authorship overseen by a very few people that were/are all in agreement. This is pretty much the exact opposite of the actual history of the book, though.
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